The Limits of language in Daoism

Koji Tanaka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


The paper is concerned with the development of the paradoxical theme of Daoism. Based on Chad Hansen's interpretation of Daoism and Chinese philosophy in general, it traces the history of Daoism by following their treatment of the limit of language. The Daoists seem to have noticed that there is a limit to what language can do and that the limit of language is paradoxical. The 'theoretical' treatment of the paradox of the limit of language matures as Daoism develops. Yet the Daoists seem to have noticed that the limit of language and its paradoxical nature cannot be overcome. At the end, we are left with the paradoxes of the Daoists. In this paper, we jump into the abyss of the Daoists' paradoxes from which there is no escape. But the Daoists' paradoxes are fun!
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-205
Number of pages15
JournalAsian Philosophy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2004


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